tv Charlie Rose PBS January 6, 2010 11:00pm-12:00am EST
re: welcome to the broadcast. tonit anxclusive conversation with america' envoy to the mdle east, rmer senator george mitchell. doou have a hard time with the perction on the one hand that we are not an innocent broker? >> oh, i hear ate lot but i don't believe to be true. >> rose: do yohave to spe to it? >> oh, sure, yes, i do. gularly. here in e united states, in rope and in the middle east. that asrtion is based on the sumption that thenited ates cannot at the same time be total committed t israel's security-- which we are-- and be totally committed to the creation of the palestinian state-- whh we are. ani believe that thoseare not
mutually excluse. to the conary, that i believe ey are mutually reinforcing. it will help israel get security fo its peoplef the palestinians have a state and this issue is over. >> rose: grge mitchellfor the hour. next you've had a co in the last 20 yrs, ( screams ) you've had aand in giving collegscholarships... and support to thousds of our nion's... most promising sdents. ♪ ( coca-cola 5-note mnemoc )
captioningponsored by se communications from our studios inew york citythis is charlie rose. >> rose: george mitchell is here. he is president obama's speci envoy to the middle east, t former maine senator and majoty leader has a proven record o okeringagreements. he chaired the ace talks in northern irela that lead to theistoric goodriday agreement of 199 in 2000,e lead presidential commission to tend cycle of olence between palestinians and israeli his new msion is to advan president obama' commitment to comprehensive peacin the middle eas he has spent the past year tryi to get palestinians and israelis bk to the negiating table. ma say the administration's rly focus on a complete settlement freezled to the cuent stalemate. senator mitchell returning to the region thismonth and i am
pleased toave him at this ble at thisime. so welcome. >> thanks charlie. >> ros great to see you. >> you, too. >> rose: what's the mood over there about the possibilies in a few year? >> i think there's mor optimism there than herebut you have to temper it withhe reality of the difficulty the complexy, the length of the conflict. i'll be goi back in the next few days and my slope tt we n makerogress onthree trac, which is the fort that we'vbeen making under the direction of the prident and the secretary of state. first political negotiations t t the parties into meaningful negotiations tt will prode a peace agreement secondly,ecurity to make certain that any agreement sures theecurity of the people of israel and the palestinian ople and the surroundg states. and third, economic growth and what we call institutional efrts to help the palestinians improve thei enomy ando
encourag the current prime minister-- an impressive person salaam fayed-- who is trying to build from theround up the institutions o governce that wille able to gorn effectively on d one of the paleinian state. >> re: they also call that bottom-up. >> bottom-up/top-dow >> rose: a the israelis supportive of that >> yes, they are. they've taken stepsn the west bank to rede the mber of checkpoints androadblocks. to facilitate access, movement, and mmerce. there's a long way to go obviously, for talestinians it's not enough, for the israelis it's a lot andwe keep working wi both sides in an effort to improve it. but e palestinianconomy will show significa growth this year. viously from a low be, but nonethelessimproving. eir security fors are outstanding by anymeasure, the israelis are vy, very open in thr praise of the efrt that's been maden palestinian security. what we want to do is to make
certain that when the palestinian ste is eablished as a result o meaniful politil negotiations, the is from the first d the capacity to gover effectively an we support prime minier fayed's efforts in that rerd. >>ose: there is this impression reflected in the "new york times" editorial thathe past year has not been successful becau the administraon stressed settle freeze. >> charlie, aittle over a year ago... before i knew...ad any idea tt i would be ask to take this job i w in israel and igave a speec at the universitynd the question i was asked about northerireland and my answer i poied out that the peace agrment in northern ireland came 800 years afr the british domination of ireland gan. after the speech, a grp of people gathered around you know how it is, when you speak people want to shake your hand, ask you other questions, makeomments. anlderly gentlemame up to me, hard of hearingsaid? a loudoice, he sa "senator
mitchelldid you say 800 years?" i said "yes, 800 years." herepeated aga in a very lo voice "800 years? " i said "yes." he waved his hand, he said "no wonder you settled such a recen argument." >> re: (laughs) >> those arethings, a issue that's gone on longerhan 800 years is going to resolve in a few months a if we only tak this step or tha step, really i think our misperceiving the complexity... >> rose: but the argument goes ngor this idea. focusing on a settlement freeze-- whi iaelis were unlikely to agree to-- you created disappointment from the beginning. because it wasn unachieble objective. >> all you have to do is go back anread theapers over the past fivor six years to see that it was not the obama administration or e secretary of ste or i w suggeed a settment freeze in this instance. evy arab country-including
the palestinians, 13 whom i visited fore we began sutantive discussions with the iselis-- said that there would not be any steps unls there was freeze. secondly, you've en in a lot of netiations. if you want to get 60%, do you begin by asking for 60%? >> rose: no, you ask for 100%. >>here you go, charlie, you've already figur out negotiations! rose: (laughs) sohat we got was a moratorm, ten months, far lesshan what sequested but more siificant than any action taken by any previous government of israel for the 40 years that settlement enterprise has existed. ten months of "noew starts" in the st bank. less thawhat we asked much, mu greaterhan any prior government has done. and think over te is going make a significant difference othe ground. >> re: and you andecretary clinton praised prime mister netanyahu for agreeingo that. >> yes.
>> ros it does not include a jerusalem. there've been announceme in the last 48 urs of n settlement constction in east jerulem where thealestinians want t make their catal. >> yes. >>ose: and it's in the midst of pastinians. if you go back er time and look at campavid and the prior efforts, you will see thathe single most difficult issue amidst an array of extrely diicult issues is jerusalem and it is vy complicated, fficult, emotional on all sides. jerulem is significant to the three monotheistic religions-- chstianity, judai, islam. it's impornt to everybody. we recognize that. and we try to deal with it. t understand the fferent pepectives. israel anexted jerusalem in 1980. >> rose: "anext" is an imptant word. >> annex is avery important word.
no other country including the united states recogniz that annexizati. neher do the palestinians. but forhe israelis, what th're building in i part of israel the others don't see it tha y. so you have the dely divergen perspectives o the subject. our view is let get into negotiations. let's deal with the issues and me up with the sution to all of them includingerusalem which will be ceedingly difficult but many my judgmt possible. the raelis are t going to stop settlements in... or construction in east jerusalem. th don't regard thatas a settlement because thethink it's part ofsrael. >> ros people recogne the annexation. how many count please? >> to the best of my knowdge, there aren't a. immediely after the annation e united nations... >> rose: s you'r going to let them gohead even though no o recognizeshe annexation. >> you say "let themo ahead." it's whathey regard as their
country. they don't say ty're letting us g ahead when we build in manhattan. >> rose: but n't international rules have somethi to do with what somebody can do to define as their couny. >> there are disputed legal issues. of that there can be no ubt. and we could spd the next 14 years arguing over disputed legal issu or we c try to get a notiations to resolve them in a manner that mee the aspirations of both societie keep this in mind: e iaelis have a sta, aery successful state. ey want security, which they ought to have. >> rose: most important them. >> most importt to them. the pestinians don't have a state. they wan one. and ey ought to have one. we believe that neither can attain its objective by denying tohe other side its objective. the palestinia are not going to get a state until the people of israel have a reasonable sense of sustainable surity. the israel, on the other hand, are not going toet that
asonable sense of sustainle serity until there is a palestinian state. and we think ratherthan being mutually exusive, they're mutually reinforcing. and wehink both sides would be better off to get into a negotiation, to tr to achieve the peace agreement that my heart a soul cybill possible. difficult an complex ast may be. >> rose: why do you belie it's possible >> because it's in the best interest of the people onoth des. >> rose: it' been in their best intere for a long time. >> deite the horrific events of the past half century, allof the death, all of the destction, all of the mistrust and all of theatred, a substantial majity on both sides still believes that the way to relve the problem. and you say it's ban that way for a long time it has been. but i believe with all... with everything i have that tha there'no such thi as a colict that can't be ended. conflis are creat, there conducted, they're sustained by
human beingsthey can be ended by human beings and ielieve this one can be ended and i think it will beended. >> rose: and do yohave a time ame for it? two years? >> we they the negotiation should last no me than tw ars. we thi it can be done within that piod of time. we he the parties agree. rsonally i think it can be done in a shorter perd of time. >> rose: the big question going into ts is the israelis say want no determidborders. palestinians say no, no, we want the ' bders as where we start from. how do you get past the probm of wre the negotiatn about rders starts? >> secretary of state clinto ma a statement just recently in whi she set forth t positions of the two sides and expressed the vw-- which i strong hold-- at through negotiations those can be reconciled. and the palesnian view is that you ould start with the '67 lines with agreed swaps. both ses understand it's not going to be the67...
>> ro: so settlemen will have mad a difference in terms of the way the final borders are termined. >> the's no doubt about that d i think that's fairly universal unrstanding of that. at's just a reality at's going to havto be dealt. with y can ask wishfully this things might be asou would like them to be o you dealwith them as they are and i think we have to deal wit them as they are. but there will be adjustmts withswaps and what i believes that we can t an agreement on at once we gethem into negotiations. i think here, chaie, the haer part is gting started thanetting finished. >> rose: how a you gng to sell abbas on the idea that even though yove saidou will never negotiate as ng as there's no free ze settlements m asking you to negotie. >> one thing i learnedn northernreland is you don take the first no as a final answer. >> rose: yes. >> nor the second no. nothe hundrth no. nor th second ndredth no. you have to keep at it.
charlie, ias inorthern ireland for five years. i chaired thre separate ss of discussions. the maybeegotiation lasted 22 months. for 700 days e side sd "we will never agreeo new institutionsetween north a south ireland." the otheride said for 700 days "we will never agre to a new northern ireland assembly." and the 701s first day they both agreed to wh they said theyouldn't agr to. now, obviously, we have great spect forresidentbbas. we think and prime minister fayerepresent strong and effective leadersh for the palestinian pele and are the ones that we think are goingo produce a pestinian state. but ourffort is to persuade them that the best way to achieve th objective is to get into negotiations and perha ere are somether things that can be done at they will regard as positive a as a sufficientasis to getnto the
discussions. >> ro: you've said one of the lessons northern ireland is you never take away theparty's dreams. they've had a eam that will be like they passionately have wanted. it will not be tha way but ty have to go into it believing it might be possie. >> that's right. it's verimportant for every dividual human being and societies have dreams, wha i call aspiratns. to he meaningfu goals that you reach for and the way to make progress is aim high, make a meaningful effort a make steady progressowards yo goal. and waitg around for the perfect solution to com floating down from heaven usually don't produce any progss at all. >> rose: now everying you've said we've known and wis supreme known for a long time. you have to believe i this, y have to netiate, you have to
talk. but you need to have concrete action. somebo's got to do something that encourages e other pson too something. who's prepared t d something to encouragehe other to do something? >> well, you have seral things. first, thesraelis have taken eps. >> rose: the moratorium. >> the moratorium is significant. they've reded roadblocks. theye reduced some checkpoints. they're encouraging economic growth. palestinians are making very significant steps. until the last couple of years, the inciple problem where from theiside was the absence of secuty and the absence-- the complete absence-- of any effort to restrain those o were engaged in violence against israelis. that was the israelis' angle. we don't have a partner. they're not doing anything about the terroris and the olence. you now ve a govt is doing mething actively, agessively succsfully as the israelis acknowledged so both sides have moved quita way. not enougho satisfy the her.
each of them has got a long list of things ey want the oth sideto do and our eort is to gethem together to stt moving in that directi. you have one othe thing, chlie, which i wanto comment on. you have a president and a secretary of state who are completelynd totally and personally committed to is objective who are vy deeply involved and i lieve at's gointo make a differee. >> rose: somehow that difrent from previous administrations? >> because ateast the last two administrations, the eort began late ithe administration. the annalis pcess, which which esident bush and secretarrice deserveredit didn't begin unt toward the end of the president' term. this preside began 48 hours after taking office. appointednow this position toays after he wa sworn in as president and you know at he said? he said "i want yo go over there toght." i id "mr.resident, i've got a wife and kids, i don't have any clhes with me, i have to home and tell tm i'm going to leave." i had to go home far day to get
ready to-to-go. he was anxious fm the first to get into it. >> rose: okay but tell me... since the mont he said tha to you and the moment tha you prepare xt week to be back the, things are better or worse? >>h, they're much better. look, whene said thato me in january of 2009, there hadjust come to an end the erce conflict gaza. thereas no prospect of any discussion, no possibility of an negotiation. israel had an electio coming up in two weeks, they di't even have government that we could talk to. we didn't ben subsntive discusons with the current israeli govement until m. >> rose: what have we done that's mad a difference? >> i think a huge difrence. the esident went to cairo, delivered a sech that i tnk wi go down in the history bookand transfo dramatically... let me finish. ameran vie, views ward america and americans throuout th regio ande've now undertak the initiative that
we've started, t points i made earlr which i won't repeat in the interest o your time and the viers' time about what we'rtrng to get done. the presint has been over ere several times, the secrary has been there many times. i've been the every month just about since i took this position. we're makg an intense efrt to demonstre that we are committed to this process. leme make clear. >> when we get int a negotiation, we're going to be involved in an active, sustained and determined way to tryto encourage the parties to ach what i bieve is an agreement that is possible. >> rose: two questions com up. mber one, there is an argument made that if you look when there's en real progress, it was when t united states was not involved, was t engaged. doeshat argument have merit with you? there >> there has been some progress wh the united states was not engaged. >> when the rties themselves had to see in the theiinterest to do something. >> that's a huge issue and we have to encourage themake greaterwnership of the process
that they're involved in. but let's be clear. while somerogress has en made absent directamerican volvement, in the end what agreements have been reached wereirectly the result of american rticipation at the hiest level: camp david involving preside carter, president clton and the jordanian reement, prident clinton and the effort at camp david which didn' qte succeed d what we're going to have to have is contied and active american involvent. and with ts president and with this sectary of state ihink we're going toave a combination that hasn't been matched in modn history. >> rose: t other side of tt is they're sayin we need more erican involvement and the united states shoulde doing somethin to bring togher fatah and mas so that the palestinians spoke with one voic the prime minister of qatar said that very similar ing in the last three days. >> yes. charlie, one the thing i get
when i go over theren one here is "you americans are too boss" in the other earwe need mor american involvement." >> rose: right and what are you gettg from the arab neighbors? >> well, tre is, i believe, a strong feeling that the time has comeor negotiations to begin. we're getting a lot of encouragemenin that regard. what we want from them is to build on the arab peace initiative proposeby the king of saudi abia in 2002, supported by all ofthe arab and indeed, muslim... non-arab muslim countries. ando engage with israel in a way that moves toward the full normalization. we don't ask f full normalization now. and i'll give you specific amples. what we nts a parallel process. as the israelis and the pastinians talk in negotiations, israel, the palestinians, d all of the surrounding countries would meet deal with regional issues:
energy, wer, trade, communicions, transrt. all of which have been scussed inhe past but haven't been brought to full true wigs. and we think the wayo move forwardis an israeli/palestinian agrment. israel and syria israel a leban and full implementation the arab peace initiative. th's theomprehensive peace in the region that is the objective set forth by t esident and the secretary of state. rose: that's the grand bargain. >>hat is. >> re: speaking of the syrians and tuey, is tha deal,ome raelis going through turkey or the united states gointhrough turkeyto deal withhe syrns, does it have legs? >> we've tried very hd. i've m with the turkish leadership, includi their current foreig minister many times, including in justhe last few weeksnd we' tried very hard toet the syrians and e israelis to reengage. until now,the syrians want to complete the indirect talks
through turke thategan in 2008 but ended when the gaza conflict upted. th israelis prefer immediate and direct netiations with the syrians, not completi the indire process through the rks. whate've said to e two side is we want to facilitate their coming together and will be going t both israel and sia on my upcoming visit to try to furtherhis process and we' prepared to do the many any mannerhich is sucss to feel the two sides. so f they have not found a formula that wil enabl them get into it but we' persisting in that. and we bieve thatn isra/syria track could operate in parallel with an israeli/palestinian track scussions. >> ros the end result of an israeli/syrian track wld be syria's recognion of israel? >> yes. peace beeen the two of them. dramatic cnges that we... >> rose: and you think it's possible they can ree on things like borders and golan heigs and all ofhose iues?
>> yes, do. >> rose: that you beeve? >> i believe tha yes, i do. >> rose: from talking to both sides? >>es. u know they've come very close in the pt and believe they can so now. >>ose: and israelis accept that idea that wcan give up the golan heights a still be secure. >> they don't accept thedea of ving them up. that's partof the negotiaon and, of coursewhat the syrians don't cept is the ea that they're going to stop providi assistce to hezllah and hamas and cnging their relationship with iran. you're getting into the subje ofegotiations now. you can'tsy s to one sid "you have to agree in advance to what the otr side wants." you' got to get them into a negotiation so they canthen reach a mutually advantages compromise. >>ose: what is it at president abba wants? >> viable, independent geographically contiguous palestinn state based on the 67 borde withutually agreed swaps of land. >> rose: and what do you say to him th makes him believe that's possie?
>> well, i say tha it is ver much in e interest of the palestinian people. thatt is possible because i believe that there's a widespad recognition in the region among palestiniansnd israis alike that is is in the mutual interest and there are other greater threatin the region. the continue efforted by ir to extend itsnfluence into the gulf region has raised concerns, indeed, alarm amo many ofhe arab states. and the best way... the mechanisby which iran extends its inuence in the regio- on mechanism-- is throughhese conflicts. through support ofezbollah, through support of hamas, through some efforts that were made public during one of my visits or there, eorts now in egypt. andfhe methody which ty are seeking to extend that influence is these conicts, then the best way to close off that alrnative, tha mechanism
for extding inflnce, is to end the conflicts to enable the people of th region to recognize the common threat a to act together in ison against that teat rather than disageing among themlves. >> rose: h a big a problem is the gaza invasion that took ple? >> iwas a very serious problem from thestandpoint of the reaction of e arabs and the palestinns. >> rose: thas the reason the tus dropped out of beg the mediator, is it t? >> well, the mediation endedhe moment tt the... >> rose: the invasion too place. >> the conflict bega >> re: are the israes continuing to engage in embargos ansanctions that prevent the palestinians in the gaza to have someind of improvement in their li? >> yes. they have not permitted fu opening of the cssings. >> rose: do you agree with that? >> i think they wou be better f if they reopened the crossings. om their viewthey are trying to contain hamas and they are
trying to maintain the maximum verage to obtain the returnof e captured soldier. rememberow, you have t keep th in mind, chlie. it's verdifficult type of conflict in which people are engage when fighters gatherin poputed areas, when medical and other facilities ar used as military staging areas,to fight ese kinds of conflicts in modern timess extremely difficult, particularly wi the overwhelming imbalan in fire power that exists. and these e not easy qstions to resol of ho do you respond when rkets aresent intoour country? rose: at the tim of the cairo speech, while evebody applauded the speech, everybody else said in the next breath "ty're going need to see action. they're going to nee to see me action following that asrational tone that the president set in cairo." >> yes. yes. >> re: and we havet seen
that action. >> well, we are trying, charlie. e question is, do you produce action.. >> rose: fair enough. >> within 24 hours, 24 days there's no doubt thatthe commitment is the. but, look, abou a few weeks after i was appointed th positi, i read article in the paper that said that the united states hadn'tome up with a newolutionand hadn't resolved thmiddle east conflict. newspaper right. (laughs) >> well, i mean, i wh we uld. we're all impatient at the lac ofrogress. bukeep in theomeistorical perspective. thiss a difficult, complex situation that's gone on for a very lg time and we are making what i believeo be significant progress. >> rose: are you carryi any new ideas to the middle east next week? what we're goi to tel them that we think the me has come tonter notiations andthat we think... we ll lay out what we think is a proper basisor doing so a time frame for achiing agreement, aethod of
negotiatg that we think wl achieve the desired rest. rose: can't you tell me what the method is, snow isit keeping it ambiguous? getting em to talk is the grt advancemente need now. they're not talkg to each other. >> that's right. >> rose: so the first step is to get them to talk. >> well, basically what we have suggested to the israelis is a series of step and aions that they could take that would encourage president abbas t enr the discussions. >> rose: why can't you te me at they are. that's my question, reay. >> because i want them-to-discuss with them before discuss it with u. >> rose: fair enough. buit just seemslike this can't be grt secret, can they? or not? >> there are no magic bullets here, charlie. if you asked a hundred experts on the middle east what are the stepthat might be taken... rose: they would allagree on st... >> they wot agree, bow you'll have different opinion b they'll all cover th same ground. they have to do with what is ocrring on the west bank dealing with checkpots, movement of... >> rose: and that's getting better because oprime minister
fayyad,the pestinians? >> it's a very impressiv leader. >> re: the more he does bottom-ustuff, the more the israelis are willing toessen the tensions at the checoints. >> that'sart of it. to also expand the areas in whh palestinians he both civil a security authority. to entable better mement of goods in those areas. to take other sps that will provide at a direct ecomic benefit to the people. greater freedom. toake some steps with respect to gaza to ask the palestinians to take other steps. to ask the arabs to take other step we've set these a out. i want to belear that in the steps th we've asked, weave not presented them, nor do we regard them, as ends in themlves. they are means to an end. the d is aeace agreement achievedthrough direct negotiations by the parties. i just described you what we
want to get t arab states to with respect to rional conferences. >> rose: right. >> tra relationsith israel. communications. ansportation. all of... cultural a pitical exanges. all of those things are among e actions that we are asking people to take. >> rose: ithe arab initiate helpful? >>es, it is. i commend the king of saudi arabia for the effor it is a positive step in the right dection. by itselfit won't be enough. requires gotiation and a discussion. by its very tms it requires a negoation. it says a negotiated end to e israeli/lestinian conflict. we're tryg to, in effect, fill in the sce that it create by calling for thi type of reement. >> rose:f the raelis thought thatisrael cld live in peace
and serity, mostf the israeli leaders that you know would be preparedo pport a palestinian ste with some variation of t '67 borders, some rpect for east jerusalem and jerusam being an internional city. i'm going to what barr rk had on the table at camp davi. >> but, remember, barac lost the st election. >> rose: but he's now the defense ministerand he has a voice. up >> he s a very important voice and he's an outstanding leader. >> rose: and remember is. thealestinians tued it down! they turned down more than they are likely tobe oered today. well,hat's another rean for getting into negotiations right away, because the options aren't tting any better. but i don't wa to speak for the israeli leadershi >> ros i just want to make sure we understandhe issue. the issue is security.
if they thought the had security most of the israeli ldership would... >> wel charlie, jiz a vibrant democrac doll wide range of views amon th israeli leadership anamong the israeli public. under their stem, they have a lot of parties. it isn't like ours, a t-party syem. so they ve coalions and there are a lot of what we call single-iue parties. so you could make almost any statement on the subject... >> rose: and somebody... >> someone will support the views. so i woul't presumeto speak for that and we e not toe critical of the facthat it's a vibrant democracy where people debate and discussnd disagree on iues. what i am sayin is thai believthat a majority o the people of israelavor a two-stat solution a wh adequate security assances would be prered to move forward on that basis. that's certaly not a unanimous view, but i believe tt's the majority. >> rose: on thether hand, thers not a unanimous vw with the palestian
community. >> no. >> rose that ty think they shld recognize israel or not engage in some kind of action against them. >> well, that's the principle difference between fatah and hamas. the palestinian authority, which is basically the fatah party, believes in non-violee and negotiion. hamas believes in viont sistance and the destruction of israel. and this the difference. >> rose: is any pgress being made on bringin hamas and fat together? >> there have been extensiv diussions. >> rose:hat egyptians and erybody else. >>ed by the egyptians and everybody else. they're still in some digreement. lookwe think eryone should participate. but we think they should participate based upon a commitment to democrac principles. we think tha that's theway to get people moving forward. to get a commitment that we agree to peaceful negotiation, we accept and hor past agreements ande... when we reach agreement, tt will be
the end of i now, that's incompatible wi some of thelaims made by some of the partipants who say "our al is the complete destructi of iael and we don't recognize prior agreemes." so how do you expt to sit down and ta to someone committed your destruction. >> rose: but if you talk long enoughyou believe, peopl will come around and find reason to change their opinion. >> that hashappened inany cases in the past and there are other cas where it did not happen. and what youave to do is to try to make rational and discerning judgments about ether or not that is possibl >> re: here you go. george mitchell in nohern ireland had no probl with talking to the i.r.a.. on the other hand... correct >> no, it's not correct. >> rose: okay, tell me why. >>irst, i nev talked to the i.r.a.. >> rose:y i mean... go ahead. >> the send question was the politica party affiliated with the i.r.a., nn fein, and the same on the unionist side. keep imind, i mentioned
earlier negotiatio in northern ireland lasted 22 month for the first 16 months, sinn fein did notarticipate. not until they agreed privately to mand publicl to what became known as the tchell inciples... >> re: sinn fein was the political arm of the i.r.a.. >> that's right. but my point is they didn't participate inhe talks until 16 mons after they began and only when they accepted the mitchell principleswhich cl r a renunciationf olence, a willingness to participate rough democratic means and to accept t result of e agreement and noto try to change iby force. >> rose: but you did not demand that they giveup all thr weapons. >> well, i got started in the press over there on the whole subjecof weans a nobody's demandg that the weapons be giveup in the middle east. what i said was that they suld be parallel and disarmame came later. in tend, we got a peace agreement and the disarmant
has occurred. and that because we had patien, we had determition, and we had a clear set of prciples. d what we did was to say we want evybody there, but you have to commit yourself abide by democratic principles. charlie, let me use a absur example to make the case. we all agr ections are essential democracy. but it is very important to understand thatlections by emselves do not make a democracy. mocracy is an ongoing obligation. if political leader in the ited states-- reblican or democrat-- got elected in a completely free d fair electi and then announced "i'm goincreate a milia, and if i don't gety by that the congre, i'm going to feel free to use themilitia." uld you they's democratic, even though he g a elected or
she got elted? >> rose: no. >> of course not. so democracy, let'sbe clear, is an ongoing obligatio to abide by docratic principles. and to renounce the e of violence as a means of achving your political objtives and to accept and honor prior agreements. that's what what we're askg. that's not a l to ask. now, i think the way to do it is to get the process going. create some incentive for people to parcipate. that's what happened in rthern irand. there was no ientive for sinn fein or the.r.a. or... >> ros or they we tired o the cflict. they were very tired of the conflict. and on the otheride you had the me situation if not parallel bause you had several smaller organizations, n one enty, but youad political parties and paramilaries. and wha we... the hard part s getting started in a process which wa seen as fair and on and which begano be see as
ving at least som prospect for succe althou that was very problematic. and theneople staed comg in. th's what i think we need here. >> re: you hope toccomplish is in two yea. e moratorium is for ten months. yes. >> re: that gives y an incentive to say to the parties what? you better get this done is w bett get this done before they start... because the moratori only allows... if settlements are important to y or the abnce of settlements, you better g something done before the moratoriumnds because i don't thinwe can get it again. >> charlie, willou come with me on my next visit and make that spiel? it made sound better coming from you. >> re: what this conversation is isn is what you're going over there andnd what you hope to and how you...but also inde the head of somebody who's done it before. you're not without experience in this arena. there's the talkf a prisoner exchange. would th build confidenceif e israelisould get hamas
isoner back? >> wl, that will n bld coidence with the palestinian authority because itill, in fact be seen as valation of hamas's tactics, violt resistce. it'sery important politically and emotionally israel to obtain the relea of the pris. we undstand that and i think the prime nister is trying very harto do that. >> rose: well, the egyptians have gten involved inhat, too. >> ty were involved initially, the german mediatorot involved. buthe point, is it's an excruciatinglyifficult cision because it does send the message that their vlent restance has paid offnd it will lead othersround the world to seek mor htages and that's one o the toughest decisions at the prime minier has to make and we acpt the reality that hs got to keep makin this effort. but what we think i that ther should als be actions taken th respect to the palestinian
authority which believes i peacef negotiation and that' the approach tha ought to be rewarded. rose: is there an incentive to do sothing about this in israel today? >> oh, believe the prime minister is definitely committed on this. i believe that he wants to brg is to a conclusion. >> rose: and how muc incent sieve there to do something now because isrlis look at demographics and they look at a window thamay be closing on two-state soluti. >> yes. think thas a huge incentive for that and othereasons. i think ere are other reass as wl, but let's take t mographics. if you count the number o ara in israel, in gazand in the west bank, they e about equa to the number of israelis, jewish iselis. d the birthrates among the
palestians and israeli arabs is rising mor rapidly so the demographic linesre crossg in about 2010/twaef. that poses a serious probl for israel because if th can't get a two-state solution, they want it to be a jewish state, a position we support, but that will be difficult if they e in a minority. e second reason is technology. if there is an iron w of human history is it thatweapons r rapiy disseminated and the invention of newweapons quickly spreadround the world. right now what u have are rockets being disseminated. an estimated 30,000 to ,000 rockets held hezbollah on iael's nthern border. hamas having i don't kw the number b a substantial numb of rockets and whilehe technology of particularly the hamarockets is crude, there's
obviously an on ing campai to upgrade. >> rose: and there anrms market out there >> oh, there's ahuge arms rket out there. the trade in arm is very, very large. not just to increase the number of rockets but to incree the guidance stems, the range, the destructive power. iran, ofourse, is ver actively engaged in a missile program that now has... >> rose: supporting hezboah and mas. and itswn direct capacy with missile that uld reach israel. so there is a long-range threa posed by technology. and the final thrt, which a political one, is ilation. the best thing for israel, not just for its ownecurity but for its dealings with other natis besides the unite states is to enter into a negotiatio reach an agrment, have cprehensive peace of the ty that i just described earlier sch i think would go a
long way towaending the creasing isolation that has occurr in many respects unfairfullmy judgment but nonetheless something that h to beealt with. so i thk lear stlip is fully aware of all of this. on the otherand, they have immediate security concerns that ey have to dealith and so there's a constan balancing. >> rose: you have been a majority lear in the united states senate. you have been a distct court judge, if i remember. a majorityeader in the unite stat senate. it is saidill clinton was epared to put you on the sueme court. >> he d. offered the position to me. >> rose: exactly >> and yet the is this the most challengg, the most exciting thmost interesti thing that you have done in your pressional life? >> actuall that's been said about almost every job i've undertakent the time i had th job. >> rose: harry rd would say... >> you left out sterds and jor league baseball. >> rose: well, did. t i was... >> actuay, this is very difficult. it is complex. thers a long history here.
there is... on bot sides there's a nse of ievance, of victimization. there is widesead mistrus, hatred, even and so you earlier ud the phrase confidence ilding. i have to tell you, i think that's reay an overstatement of what we'r trying to achieve. it isn't so much you're gog to get to the point of trust and confidence, that you're going to get to the minimum level of mistrust that makes possible action by political leaders in very difficult and hostile circumstances. let me tell you, charlie, it takes a t of courage for these political leaderto operate in these circumstances. i w that firsthand in northern ireland. i see it firsthand now. there are direct threats agait them personall, their families. >> rose: on bh sides. on all sides. these mennd women who serve in the leadersh positions takenormous political risk. they take a lot of abuse. we understand thatn
politics... >> rose: andthey're not in controof circumstances so the y make an iniative and all of a sudden somebod decides to rn it against th and they lose the sport at hom >> t slightest concession i seen as weakness. of cavg in. of the lack of conviction. these are not easy situations to deal with. souess i'm... it may sound naive and silly,ut i admire the men and wom who take these leadership positions becau of thcourage they display and what they're doing even as they often fa to dohat i think necessary in the circumsnces. >> rose:ut even though t discussion, i would are, has nothanged much. mo people they the outlineof the settlement are th same and at most... the argumen have be essentially the se, have ey snot. >> that' what mak it frtrating, charlie. th's what makes it frustrating. >>ose: does this make it frustratg? do you have... you have ls of caots. do you havany sticks. >> oh, sure. >> rose: what? >> wl, both side.. >> rose: other than saying
"good-bye, take care of yourself we're out of here." >> wl, both sid make the same argumt to me in rerse. th the re problem, they say, is you haven't pssured the otheside. >> rose: yh exact. >> cuthem off, tell them you won't help them amore, you won't donything, we'll walk away. i say, wouldou like us to do that to you? oh, no, but you shouldo it to the other de. e reality is that, yes, of course the united stat has both carrots and sticks. you have to be ver reful about how and when you use them. >> ros when was the last time wesed a stick? >> afghanistan. >> rose: oh, know,ut nobody's talki about the united states tros going in. they're not. i mean,ive me an example. i'm serious about is. you sit there and you say to israellook, ifou don't do this. what? >> underamerican law,he united stes can thhold support on loan guarantees to israel. president gege w. bush did so. >> re: exactly. >> on o occasion. >> ros and his father. >> well, the law that... the
most recent presidt bus acted under sn't in place at the time ofhe first president bush. so there were different mechanisms. that's one mechanism thas been publicly discussed. there e others. and you have to keep open whatever optns. but our view is that we think the wato proach this is to try to persuade the parties what is in their selinterest. anwe tnk that are making some flog that regard and we're going to continue i that efrt d we think the way to do is to get them into negotiatns. >>ose: is there much of a perception that we... do you have hard time with the perception on the one hand that we are not an innocent broker? >> oh, i hear it a lo, but i don't believe it t be tru >> rose: do you have t speak to ? >> oh, sure, ye, io. regularl here in the unit states, in europe, and in the middle eas. that asstion is based on the
assumption that the unid stes cannot at t same te be tally committed t israel's securi-- which we are-- d be tolly committed to the creation of the palestinian stat- which we are. and i believe that those are not mutually clusive. tohe contrary, i believe they are mutuay reinforcing. it will help israel get secuty for itspeople ifhe lestinians have a sta and this issue isover. >> rose: but that's a harr cell. you've g to convince ne hang a palestinian sta and making concessions and taking some risks far is the bt way to achieve the securit.. >> long-term security. and the other hand, for the paleinians it is that you're not going to get a state until the israelis have a reasonable and sustainable sense of security. now, charlie, what've found-- not just in the mide east, i found in in northern eland. when iake positions that agr
withheir pre-conceived mions they tend think i'm very smart and theyike me. >> rose: and n-biased. >> and when i take positions th don't have to coiide with their views, i not so smart. >> rose: you take posions in these negotiatis? >> oh, of cour i do. course i do. i participate activel rose: in terms of taking positions. why isresident obama's pularity so low in israel? it 4%. >> no, that's completely false. >> rose: have you heard that before? >> i've heard the fige and you're cing a commly cited public figure. rose: exactly. so tell me why thas wrong. >> because it's sply not te. several polls that i'veeen in the past month show tt he is... i'll give you th numbers. 49% vorable, 45% unfavorable. 43% favorabl, 37% unfavorle. it's a reasonable number. but a prality support him in rael and a smaller pluraty oppose him.
>> rose: i don't understand how his approac is different from therevious president, the previous predent, the previou presiden >> well, i just cited one way, he start two days... >> rose: oy, igot that. age. he got in early. i got th. jup >>econdly, he went tocairo and gave an hisric speech. that's another way tha it's different. thirdly, a fl-time envoy working on it. i don't want t say 24/7 because it's not qui that. but it's a figure of speech. working i full time. participing with... >> re: but all this has to do with involvement and engagement, it doesn't have to do with different ids, does it? or different positions or different anything >> wl, charlie it's different in the sense th it evolves over time. but if you'r saying that look, we've been driing water all is time and haven't come up with a new liquid, just think how long the world's been drinking wat. anwhy haven't we come up with a new liquid that does the job? at's the stuff... >> rose: maybe wha i'm saying is it's not a question of new
ideas, it's a questionof very skillful negotiations that he to take pla in order to get people to come in without pre-conditions and to ke a chan and take... andrisk for a longer term solution. >> don... by... i don't want to rul out new ideas in the sense that we don't suggest new approaches. approaes that at one time and circumstance might not be appropriate but at another p r. policies change with circumstans: we're constantly updated our thinking. when i mt the... i'll be meeting in the next week th egyptians. >>ose: the war net brussels? >> yes, in brussels. i'llbe meeting with israelis, palestinians in the here i future. we constantly make suggestions on how the do this. here'she best way. if you do a, b,, and they do d e, f, will you be able to get together?
soar we haven't found the right fithaten co-insides. one ofhe things i learned in northern ireland is the old saying timing is erything in life. what constaly happens is when one de is rdy, the other sides not. and the t time the other side gets ready, theseuys are not. and what we have to do is find the formula tt getsthem both ady at the same time. on all of these fronti want to emphase political negotiations security for both peoplend what you call e bottom-up correctly-- economic and institutional growth so that when thealestinian state is created it is capable functioning effeively in day one. i think that's aery important fact and i'll close with this. i mtionedarlier... we haven't ev talked about implentation. in norern ireland itook three sets of discussions, five years that ias there before we got an agreement. it's sense then been 12 years and the agreement sti has not been fly implemented.
difficulas it is to get people to agree do the right thin it's far more difficult to get them to actually t do it after theygree do it so the real key here is to reach an agreent that is soliduilt on a foundation thathat tremely difficult process o imement station afterwar can work and wil suced. that's whyhe united states involvemt is soimportant. there is no entity onhe face of this earth other than t united stasovernment public or private entity, that can create theontext within ich an agreement is possible and, most importantly, can ensure to the extent manly ssible that full implementation will cur. and that requir a president and a secrety of state who are mmitted and detmined and lieve me we have them now. rose: thank you for coming. i know you have notone many interviews, so thank you for
taking te here this evening. >>harles,harlly, always a pleasure. >> rose: forer senatoreorge mitchell, rmer judge grge mitchell, lawyer grge mchell now envoy to one of the mos crucial areas in the world. thank you r sharing this time with us. we'll see you tomorrow night. captioningponsored by se communications captiod by media acss group at wgbh access.wgbh.org